Hate Crime Beating, Hasidic Thugs, Politically Connected Shomrim and 4 Years – NO JUSTICE!



Hasidic man gets four years for role in group beating of gay black man in Brooklyn

It’s four years for an eye.

A Brooklyn judge sentenced a Hasidic Jewish man to four years in prison for participating in a vicious beatdown that left a gay black man blind in one eye.

Mayer Herskovic was not the only person who assaulted Taj Patterson on Flushing Ave. in December 2013. But he’s the only attacker getting prison time.

“Those who stomped and chased (Patterson) did try to injure him. The defendant was involved, he participated and was found guilty for that,” said Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun.

Cop: We used trick to get video of Hasidic men beating victim

Patterson, 25, did not attend the court proceedings in Brooklyn Supreme Court on Thursday — he previously said he wants to move on with his life.

Nonetheless, the lasting effects of the senseless attack will remain with him.

“Mr. Patterson asked himself why all this happened to him and he concluded it’s because he was a young black male in a predominately Orthodox neighborhood,” Assistant District Attorney Timothy Gough said on behalf of the victim.

According to trial testimony, Patterson was walking to his Fort Greene home when men — some belonging to the Williamsburg Shomrim, a Jewish patrol group — began chasing after him. The attackers mistook him for the suspect in a car vandalism streak, prosecutors previously said.

EXCLUSIVE: Gay, black man who was brutally attacked sues city

“This defendant, that group and the community couldn’t see him as an individual, but as a criminal,” said Gough, who recommended Herskovic receive five years in prison.

Video surveillance showed men chasing Patterson for blocks. One person with a walkie-talkie was identified at trial as Yoelli (Joel) Itzkowitz, but he was not questioned for his role in the attack.

One of Patterson’s lawyers has urged the Brooklyn DA’s office to indict Itzkowitz, alleging prosecutors have overlooked Itzkowitz because his brother is the politically connected coordinator of the Williamsburg Shomrim.

Four men in addition to Herskovic were charged in the beating. Two of the cases were dismissed and two of the attackers took plea deals sentencing them to 150 hours of community service each.

“Amongst all participants who stomped and beat Mr. Patterson, this defendant wasn’t the most culpable,” Chun said of Herskovic. “Mr. Patterson was chased for blocks, but not by the defendant before me.”

Prosecutors placed Herskovic at the scene thanks to DNA found on one of Patterson’s sneakers that was thrown to the roof of a nearby building.

The “deeply scarred” Patterson asked the judge to sentence Herskovic to the maximum of 15 years in prison for the second-degree gang assault and unlawful imprisonment charges.

“When Patterson woke up in the hospital, he didn’t know where he was. He was upset, frightened and alone,” said Gough.

The victim has had surgery three times, but he’ll never regain eyesight in his right eye.

“I wish I can take back what happened to Mr. Patterson all those years ago … I hope he finds peace for all he has suffered and endured,” Herskovic told the judge as he pleaded for a lenient sentence.

“I’m 24, my life is about family, helping people,” he added. “I work as a construction worker. I work with all kinds of people, black, white, Hispanic, gay and not gay.”

Nevertheless, his lawyer Stuart Slotnick asserted outside of court that “the DNA evidence was completely and totally flawed.”



More on Taj Patterson – Beaten by Hassidic Men


Cops say they used ruse to get video evidence of gay black man’s beating at hands of Orthodox Jewish men


Brooklyn investigators assigned to an alleged gang assault that led to a gay African-American man’s blindness had to “put on a ruse” to get crucial evidence, according to trial testimony.

“Many of the residents were being uncooperative,” said NYPD Detective Eric Sanchez, who worked on the Williamsburg crime scene where Taj Patterson was allegedly beaten by over two dozen Orthodox Jewish men on Dec. 1, 2013.

As investigators came to a standstill with retrieving video footage from neighbors on Flushing Ave., a Jewish officer had to pretend to be a victim of a robbery looking for evidence to help with the case, said Sanchez.

Sanchez was assigned to the case five days after the initial investigation was abruptly closed by a sergeant in the 90th Precinct.

DNA results link Orthodox Jewish man to beating of gay black man

“We were then able to get the videos,” Sanchez said in Brooklyn Supreme Court on Tuesday during Mayer Herskovic’s trial.

Herskovic faces up to 25 years in prison for his participation in the brutal beating of Patterson. DNA evidence of Herskovic was found on the heel of Patterson’s sneaker, which was hurled to the roof of a building after MTA bus driver Evelyn Keys intervened along with another passerby.

Keys’ route on the B57 was interrupted around 4:42 a.m. as several double parked cars blocked Flushing Ave.

“I stood in the doorway (of the bus), their backs were to me and I heard one of the Hasidic Jewish men tell a (Spanish) man to go away. He said, ‘No, I’m not going to let you hurt him,’” said Keys .

Hasidic men who beat up gay black victim get community service

Keys — who was blocked from seeing the alleged beatdown — tried to take pictures with her cellphone as the group, some in Shomrim jackets, dispersed, but panicked, she said.

To read the article in its entirety click here.

Witness Testimony of “Complete Mayhem” as Hassidic Men Beat Taj Patterson



Brooklyn witness describes ‘mayhem’ of gay black man beating – NY Daily News//www.googletagmanager.com/ns.html?id=GTM-M9G2T8//widget.perfectmarket.com/opt/tboptevent.html?v=2&a=v&d=%7B%7D//widget.perfectmarket.com/opt/tboptevent.html?v=2&a=u&d=%7B%22stp%22%3A%7B%22v%22%3A1%7D%7D //widget.perfectmarket.com/opt/tboptevent.html?v=2&a=u&d=%7B%22stp%22%3A%7B%22a%22%3A1%7D%7D

Brooklyn witness testifies ‘it was complete mayhem’ as Orthodox Jewish group attacked gay black man


A Brooklyn DJ who was giving his friends a ride home after a gig testified Wednesday that he rescued a gay African-American man who was getting attacked by a group of Hasidic Jewish men.

“I made a wrong turn and saw a group of men on the sidewalk on my left beating the crap out of young man,” said Jose Guzman, the last prosecution witness in Mayer Herskovic’s gang assault trial.

One of Guzman’s friends thought the group of almost 20 Hasidic Jewish men were jumping up and down on the sidewalk in celebration for Hanukkah during the Dec. 1, 2013 assault on Flushing Ave.in Williamsburg.

“It was completely mayhem,” Guzman said.

Brooklyn judge hears 911 calls from beating of gay black man

He approached the group and was stopped by a participant, later identified at Aaron Hollender, who told him the victim Taj Patterson allegedly hit them first.

Hollender’s case was dismissed in March 2015.

Continue reading here: http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/brooklyn/

Brooklyn Supreme Court Judge Danny Chun – What are You being Paid to Provide Leniency???



This weekend we were provided a tip that the same judge who ordered community service and $1,400 in reparations fro the brutal beating of Taj Patterson may also be the same judge who is allowing slumlords to fleece their tenants. And, it turns out the tip was unsettlingly correct, making us wonder whether this Judge is just another piece of the ultra-Orthodox Brooklyn food chain allowing the Hasidim if various Brooklyn neighborhoods to act with impunity.

The Tal Patterson ruling that has drawn ire amongst many who believe that the men involved should have been charged with a hate crime and given the maximum sentence. They were instead punished withe community service (which they are now arguing should not be in a “socially diverse setting.” Let’s not forget the brutality with which they beat Taj Patterson. Were it up to us, they would be standing in a black neighborhood with signs like in the “Die Hard” movie wherein Bruce Willis must stand on a corner proclaiming his hatred for blacks, but using more derogatory terms. 

Int he current slumlord ruling, it looks like the judicial friend of the Hasidic community is again going to offer leniency, again to the detriment of anyone not Hasidic. All we can do is wonder how cheaply Judge Danny Chun’s services are being offered out. We are further unsettled that it would appear that not only do they have at lease one D.A. in their pockets, Kenneth Thomson, but they have a judge sitting there where D.A. Thompson decides to prosecute.

Have you no conscience Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun? Were you not put in your position to uphold the law? Did you do so in the Taj Patterson case? No.  



Brooklyn slumlord brothers accused of forcing out tenants so they could hike rents working on plea deal


Continue reading

Shomrim Hoping for Better Deal – Cultural Diversity a no-go…


Hasids who beat gay black man try to dodge service in ‘diverse’ neighborhood

Two Shomrim thugs who dodged jail after beating a gay black man into a pulp are now trying to shirk the conditions of their plea deal.

Pinchas Braver and Abraham Winkler — who admitted to jumping Taj Patterson as he walked down a Williamsburg block in Brooklyn in December 2013 — have now taken issue with the DA’s recommendation that they serve their 150 hours of community service in a “culturally diverse neighborhood.”

Taj Patterson was beaten by a group of Hasidic men in Williamsburg.

Instead, the men want to toil at Chai Lifeline, an organization for sick Jewish children.

While Braver, 22, and Winkler, 42, were in court Tuesday for sentencing, prosecutors opted to return to court Aug. 16 after a more thorough investigation into Chai, which describes itself as an organization dedicated to offering “a number of services for Jewish children with life-threatening illness.”

As part of the plea, the two men agreed to be sentenced on charges of unlawful imprisonment to three years’ probation and to pay $1,400 restitution for the vicious attack, which left Patterson permanently blind in one eye.

To read the article in its entirety click here.



If the Borough Park Shomrim are volunteers ‘deputized’ to keep the City safer, where did all of the money come from [diamonds…]? Are they keeping the City safer or making it more dangerous [more dangerous…]? Should we be asking about closing the tunnel now  [diamonds…]?


Man Attacked By Hasidic Mob Sues Over City & NYPD’s ‘Deep And Questionable’ Ties To Jewish Safety Patrol



There were a number of witnesses when Taj Patterson was attacked by a group of ultra-Orthodox men who yelled homophobic slurs and left him blind in one eye, but it was months until any arrests were made. Police appeared to bury the case until Patterson’s mother took it to the media, after which they arrested five alleged members of the Williamsburg Safety Patrol [WSP], the controversial ultra-Orthodox neighborhood patrol group that’s recently gotten wrapped up in the FBI’s investigation into NYPD corruption.

Patterson is already suing the WSP for the attack, and two of the five arrested pleaded guilty to lesser charges last month, but now a federal complaint is explicitly calling out the city and the NYPD’s “deep and questionable ties” to the neighborhood patrols, also known as Shomrim, alleging that their knotty relationships and patterns of favoritism were direct factors in the assault on Patterson and the subsequent investigation.

Patterson is suing the WSP under a federal statute that people typically invoke when suing the police, his lawyer pointed out—but that’s intentional, as the suit is arguing that the Shomrim have been improperly acting as an extension of the NYPD, all the while acting outside the city’s authority with little to no formal training.

“They’re all but a deputized private police force,” said Andrew Stoll, one of Patterson’s attorneys. “The city essentially has a policy—though not an explicit policy, a deeply embedded enough policy of granting the Shomrim leave to kind of run the streets and the precincts in the neighborhoods where they operate.”

Accordingly, the suit takes great care to detail the close ties between the Shomrim, the city, and the NYPD, to make the case that the alleged Shomrim members were acting under color of law when they attacked Patterson. For example, it notes that the city has funded two mobile command centers for the Shomrim, each worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, which bear NYPD insignia and are, at first glance, indistinguishable from official police vehicles. The police also provide Shomrim volunteers with police scanners, emergency lights, and the personal phone numbers of high-ranking NYPD officials, privileges that aren’t extended to most members of the public, the suit argues.

A Shomrim vehicle pictured in the lawsuit.

The suit also lays out the long history of alleged favoritism and preferential treatment of the city’s Orthodox Jewish communities by the NYPD, referencing the 1991 Crown Heights riots and alleging that “fixers” and “liaisons” to the NYPD routinely help void charges against Jewish crime suspects or otherwise give them special treatment. It quotes retired police captain William Plackenmeyer, who in 2003 told Newsday that “in Brooklyn, it almost seemed like there were two penal codes, one for the Hasidic community and one for everyone else.”

Had the Shomrim’s influence not been so powerful, the suit argues, the police would not have tried to memory-hole the assault on Patterson, only reopening the case when it came under public scrutiny. Because it took so long for the case to be forwarded to the 90th Precinct’s Detective Squad, evidence disappeared and witnesses close to the Shomrim recanted their statements, the suit alleges, which led in part to the dismissal of criminal cases against two of the men arrested—Joseph Fried and Aharon Hollender. Abraham Winkler and Pinchas Braver pleaded guilty to lesser charges last month, and Mayer Herskovic, who didn’t take that plea deal, will go to trial this August.

While Braver’s criminal case was still pending last spring, the suit alleges that he got more special treatment in the form of a special tour of the NYPD’s 19th precinct stationhouse in Manhattan—a precinct that was, at the time, commanded by Deputy Inspector James Grant, who was arrested last week for accepting bribes to keep officers “on call” to perform favors for members of the Borough Park Orthodox community.

Grant’s arrest came just over a month after three NYPD officers were demoted for allegedly accepting gun license bribes from Alex “Shaya” Lichtenstein, a member of the Boro Park Shomrim. Following those arrests, the city froze funding to that specific patrol, though more funds have since been allocated.

“If I had brought this case two years ago I would have been laughed out of court,” Stoll said. “Now everything I say is documented. Everybody knew. Within these neighborhoods and within these precincts, everybody knew exactly what was going on.”

Because of the inappropriately inextricable relationships between the Shomrim, the NYPD, and the city, the suit alleges, all three are liable for the violation of Patterson’s constitutional rights; his physical and emotional trauma; and his loss of liberty. Currently, the suit is only seeking monetary damages, but Stoll said that they also plan to seek injunctive relief—i.e., mandated policy changes.

Keep reading, here.

Taj Patterson sues City, Others should consider following suit

Taj Patterson

EXCLUSIVE: Gay, black man who claimed he was attacked by Jewish security patrol gang sues city



The far-too-cozy relationship between the NYPD, city officials, and Jewish safety patrols in Brooklyn led to the beating of a gay, black man in Williamsburg, an explosive new lawsuit to be filed in federal court Monday alleges.

Taj Patterson of Fort Greene, was walking down Flushing Ave. in Williamsburg in December 2013 when he was set upon by a gang of men linked to the Shomrim, a volunteer Orthodox Jewish security patrol. He was left battered, and lost eyesight in one eye.

In aftermath, as the Daily News first reported, cops with the 90th Precinct prematurely closed the case despite having four witnesses to the assault — delaying the investigation for 48 crucial hours.

In the lawsuit, obtained by the Daily News, lawyers for Patterson claim that the city and the NYPD created an atmosphere where the security patrols not only got official recognition and money, but could act with impunity.

Two men plead guilty to lesser charges in bias beating

Shomrim members made calls to the 90th Precinct in an effort to influence the Patterson investigation, the lawsuit claims.

Had the cops acted more quickly, it’s possible that more suspects could have been identified, the lawsuit alleges. Instead, evidence quickly disappeared. Some witnesses recanted their testimony, the lawsuit claims.

The lawsuit draws a direct line from the Patterson assault through the ongoing corruption scandal involving police officials doing favors for Jewish businessmen in exchange for gifts to this relationship between the NYPD and the security patrols.

“The City’s policies have essentially created a private police force with special connections to the NYPD, funded and outfitted by the City, without any supervision of that force,” the lawsuit alleges.

Trio accused of beating gay black man likely to avoid prison

The city is liable for Patterson’s injuries, the lawsuit argues, because it has created policies under which unconstitutional practices regularly take place, and that culminated in Patterson’s beating.

“The City’s deliberate indifference caused Plaintiff’s injuries,” the lawsuit alleges.

Along with the city, a cop and two sergeants from the 90th Precinct are named as defendants along with the Williamsburg Safety Patrol and a related organization known as the Shmira Volunteer Patrol Corp., and the five men arrested for the Patterson attack.

One of the sergeants named in the lawsuit, Ivan Furda, was docked 10 vacation days by the NYPD for prematurely closing the case.


To read the article in its entirety click here.